There is a dissociative element to President Barack Obama. It occurs between what he says and what he does contemporaneously, between what he says in scripted remarks and unscripted responses made contemporaneously, between what he says is fact and what he knows is fact, and between what he says and what he claims to have said.
One of the most recent and disturbing displays of this was two weeks ago when Mr. Obama appeared before the press corps to somberly express his sympathy for the family of the recently slain journalist James Foley and to be photographed shortly thereafter laughing it up with his friends on the golf course at Martha’s Vineyard. Even after weeks of criticism Mr. Obama failed to find fault in his conduct but allowed that the “optics” were inappropriate.
But it isn’t just an isolated instance.
- He told Pope Benedict XVI that he would do all that he could to minimize abortions while contemporaneously sending his delegates to a United Nations conference to urge unrestricted abortions as a basic human right.
- He told the American people that they could keep their health insurance under Obamacare when, in fact, he held the documents delineating the vast number of Americans who would lose their current healthcare coverage – and even that was understated.
- He told the American people that the debate was over on the issue of global warming and that every credible scientist agreed despite having the documentation that showed that the computer model upon which global warming was predicated had failed to prove accurate at any time and that, in fact, there had been no global warming for over a decade.
- He denied responsibility for ending the war in Iraq and withdrawing American armed forces despite repeated televised speeches claiming credit for it.
- He told the American people that he was unaware of Reverend Jeremiah Wright’s radical views on race and America despite having spent twenty years in Rev. Wright’s church and embracing Rev. Wright as a “member of the family.”
- In recent scripted remarks Mr. Obama read that the Islamic State must be eliminated, but moments later in an unscripted response he said that the Islamic State must be reduced to a manageable level.
- He reported that a recent meeting with Pope Francis focused on elevating the poor. In marked contrast, the representatives of the Vatican characterized the meeting as a sharp lecture on the continuing culture of death represented by Mr. Obama’s insistence of unfettered, taxpayers funded abortion on demand.
- Mr. Obama promised aid to the Syrian rebels but did nothing for over a year while the terrorists of the Islamic State gained power and authority.
- Mr. Obama promised aid to the Ukraine following the Russian usurpation of the Crimea but send only MREs (meals ready to eat).
- Mr. Obama drew a “red line” in Syria over the threatened use of chemical weapons by the regime of President Bashar al Assad but did nothing when Mr. Assad actually used them.
- Mr. Obama declared that we have been free of terrorists acts in America during his administration despite the Fort Hood shootings by a Muslim terrorist, the Boston Marathon bombing by a Muslim terrorist, and the attempted assassination of a Saudi diplomat by Iranian terrorists in Washington, DC. (For those of you forced to endure an teachers union led education in the Portland public schools please note that Iran is the headquarters for the Shia theocracy while Saudi Arabia is the headquarters for the Sunni version of Islam.)
- As recently as this week Mr. Obama denied that he had called the Islamic State (ISIS or ISIL) the “junior varsity team” despite repeated televising of him saying precisely that.
The list can go on for pages and most likely detail a dissociative incident on a weekly basis. These acts go well beyond the expected, but still deceitful, utterances of most Washington politicians. There is something pernicious about it. It falls into the same category of conduct as his refusal to authorize the release of his birth records even though they established his status as a natural born citizen. His refusal to allow the transcript of his college years to validate his claimed intelligence. His refusal to allow the transcripts from his Harvard years to explain why he is the only Law Review Editor in the history of Harvard to have failed to publish a law review article.
All of it is heightened by his own self-described brilliance despite repeated shortcomings and mistakes in the very fields he boasts of supremacy:
“I think I could probably do every job on the campaign better that the people I’ll hire to do it.” (From David Plouffe’s The Audacity to Win)
“I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors. . . I think I’m a better speech writer than my speechwriters.” (From a New Yorker article by Ryan Lizza)
I cannot explain the conduct. I just know that it leaves one wary. It is the equivalent of trying to see up a dark alley and feeling danger without knowing for sure that it exists.
In the end we will have to await the judgment of history on the character of Mr. Obama. My guess is that is will not be complimentary.